Author Archives: churchc

Report on the occurrence of synanthropic derived form of Chrysomya megacephala (Diptera: Calliphoridae) from Royapuram fishing harbour, Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India

Biodiversity Data Journal 2: e1111 (26 Jun 2014);  doi: 10.3897/BDJ.2.e1111

The occurrence of dipteran fly, Chrysomya megacephala (Fabricius, 1794) is reported for the first time from Royapuram fishing harbour (Chennai), Tamil Nadu, South East India. The fully grown third instar larvae of C. megacephala were collected from decaying fishes near Royapuram fishing harbour. This site is found to be the regular breeding site for C. megacephala. Larvae were reared under laboratory condition and freshly emerged adult flies from pupae were collected and identified by morphological features and molecular tools. Molecular identification through generation of DNA barcoding using mitochondrial COI gene of C. megacephala is appended.

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ASM issues statement on U.S. biosafety lapses

BioPrepWatch Bryan Cohen 25 July 2014

The American Society for Microbiology (ASM) said on Monday that microbiologists must take all steps possible to guarantee safety for themselves, their coworkers and the broader public from pathogenic microorganisms.

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View ASM Statement on Recent Biosafety Lapses


FAO warns of potential Ebola risk among West African fruit bats

BioPrepWatch Paul Tinder 24 July 2014

The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) announced on Monday that enhanced efforts are needed to increase awareness among West African communities about potential Ebola infection risks from certain wildlife species.

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‘Casual attitude’ to vCJD warning

BBC News 23 July 2014

The government has developed a “casual attitude” to the human form of “mad cow disease”, MPs have warned.  The Science and Technology Committee said the low incidence of variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (vCJD) was being “used as justification for inaction”.  The committee highlighted concerns around the risk of contamination in blood donation and during surgery.

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Quarantine over China plague death

BBC News 23 July 2014

Part of a city in north-west China has been sealed off and dozens of people placed in quarantine after a man died of bubonic plague, state media say.  The man died in Yumen city, Gansu province, on 16 July.

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A razor sharp line determines funding success and a bit of luck helps avoid the cut

The Conversation Olivia Carter 25 July 2014

The need for a bit of luck is no secret to anyone that has previously applied for research funding, but I think it is hard for others to appreciate the degree of variability (some would say “noise”) in the system.

The writer comments on her experience with the peer review process for research funding.

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Traditional Ayurvedic medicines without TGA registration may have toxic levels of heavy metals

The Conversation Ian Musgrave 27 July 2014

Traditional Indian (Ayurvedic) medicine uses a variety of treatment modalities, from massage to herbal remedies. Ayurvedic herbal remedies are usually complex, and some may contain ground up gemstones, pearls or even heavy metals.

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A chemical-free solution to stop bread from getting mouldy

ScienceAlert Australia 27 July 2014

Scientists have finally found a way to make bread last longer—and the new method replaces chemical preservatives with ingredients sourced from plants.  Called ‘active packaging’, this alternative adds natural preservatives to the packing material instead of chemicals to the fresh bread. The compounds used in active packaging come from plants such as oregano and clove, which have natural antimicrobial properties.

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Researchers tackle link between climate change and public health

The Guardian Graham Readfearn 25 July 2014

The Australian Academy of Science brought together 60 “early- and mid-career” scientists and researchers in Brisbane, hoping to influence how policymakers and governments respond to the impacts of climate change on public health.  It asked them to tackle the complex interactions between increasing weather extremes and the impacts on health.

The academy aims to have a complete report with recommendations to present to policymakers, politicians and the public by December.

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Dr who? Campaign to boost digital profile of Australia’s female scientists

Sydney Morning Herald Bridie Smith, Nicky Phillips 27 July 2014

Next month, the Australian Academy of Science plans to change the systematic bias against women in science on Wikipedia, hosting a Women of Science ‘’Wikibomb’’ event inspired by a similar call to arms by the Royal Society, London.

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